Dwight Seferos

That’s Real ‘Self-Empowerment’!

He's a chemist that likes to hit the slopes and thinks that, in the future, humans might generate and manage their own electricity.


Dwight Seferos is a Professor in the Department of Chemistry at the University of Toronto. We asked him everything from why he became a scientist to what’s on his playlist in hopes of giving you a better understanding of what goes on outside the lab for one of the best minds in Canadian research.

What inspired you to become a scientist?
Teachers form grade school through university.

What do you like most about being a scientist?
Discovering new things, unexpected things and those eureka moments.

What do you envision in the future of your field?
My field is energy – broadly defined. I think the future is renewables. Possibly also personalized energy where people generate/manage their own electricity – especially in areas with abundant sun light for solar.

How will your research make a difference in our lives?
Reducing the carbon foot-print of the planet will slow/stop global climate change.

What advice would you give young researchers?
Work hard, but also stay/be creative.

What do you consider your greatest achievement?
The PhD students that I have trained.

What do you read?
Scientific papers of course! Non-science related: News magazines and biography books about important people.

What’s on your playlist? 
I definitely prefer 80’s rock when I run but generally enjoy most types of music.

If you could meet any historical figure who would it be and why?
Thomas Edison, he was an amazing inventor. Amassed over 2,300 patents!

If you could do any profession other than your own what would it be?
Wow, that is tough because I really like being a chemist. Probably something related to airplanes or aerospace.

What do you like to do for fun?
Definitely enjoy spending time with my wife and our dog. I also like to get outside, run in the summer, occasionally ski in the winter. Often to the dismay of my wife and our dog, I tend to take on numerous projects in and around our house. I have really tough time sitting still…

Want to learn more about Prof. Seferos’ research? Check out his Orange Chair Interview on carbon-based materials that will revolutionize solar power.